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Stephan Balkenhol (German, b.1957)
LOT ID: 69246
Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers, 2008

Wood, paint
68.5 х 13.78 х 9.8 in. (173.99 x 35 x 24.89 cm.)
Inscribed, on base.
Lot description
German artist Stephan Balkenhol’s figurative wooden sculptures spurn the Classical ideals of beauty and present us with the nondescript everyday man/woman. "Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers" (2008) is an important and exciting sculpture by the artist, painted and carved from a single piece of wawa wood. Balkenhol uses paint sparingly, only for clothes, hair, lips and eyes, letting the raw wood represent the skin tones. The sculpture is in excellent condition. This sale marks the first time this work has come to auction.

To create his sculptures, including "Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers", Balkenhol chisels away at large-scale logs using power saws and hammers, letting his sculptures of life-like men and women spring forth, all part of the same log, thus bound literally to their base. Balkenhol does not seek to recapture the heroic glory of bygone periods but rather deconstruct the figurative statue by thrusting the most unremarkable men and women onto pedestals historically reserved for heroes and heroines and avoids creating a narrative or leading to allegorical interpretations. His figures are devoid of specific associations and emotions and typically wear nondescript outfits, such as the 'standard' white shirt and black pants of this male figure, clothing here further emphasizing the everyday nature of their existence.

The artist was born in 1957 in Fritzlar, Germany. He received an M.A. from The Academy of Fine Arts, Hochschule für Bildende Künste, 1976-1982, Hamburg, Germany; he studied under Sigmar Polke and Nam June Paik and was also a studio assistant for Ulrich Rückreim. The artist lives and works in Karlsruhe and Meisenthal, France.
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Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
  • Man with White Shirt and Black Trousers by Stephan Balkenhol
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